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Foreclosed homes renovated through HARP program

Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on 9/10/2014

48 Williams St - Before and After HARP PicThanks to low interest rates and a little known housing program making a big impact, this is a great time to buy a home. The Housing Acquisition & Rehabilitation Program (HARP), administered by VHFA, is helping qualified home buyers purchase beautifully restored and energy efficient homes.

VHFA recently purchased this once-deteriorating house on Williams Street in Rutland that is now in the final stages of being transformed into a brand new, highly energy efficient, two-story home. The home will be available for sale within the next few weeks and will include a grant to a qualified and income-eligible homebuyer that will ensure long-term affordability.  Learn more about this home or check out other homes currently available on VHFA’s website

The HARP program works like this: VHFA purchases a foreclosed home and then works with a local HomeOwnership Center affiliated with NeighborWorks® America along with Vermont-based contractors to rehabilitate the property to a high standard of energy efficiency, safety and integrity. The house is then sold to a qualified owner. The program is operated through funding from HUD’s Neighborhood Stabilization program.

The goal of each home’s rehabilitation is to make sure the next homeowner will enjoy a safe, energy efficient, newly updated and structurally sound property for years to come while communities get the benefit of a renovated foreclosed property.  The HARP program provides a sizeable grant that can both greatly reduce the net cost of purchasing these homes and eliminates the need for costly mortgage insurance. Buyers can obtain financing for the balance of the purchase price either through VHFA or another source.

The HARP program makes homeownership in the region both possible and affordable while at the same time providing significant economic benefits at the state and local level.

Pictured:  Rutland house nearing completion of renovations through the HARP program (above, photo by Gregg Over).  At right, the home before renovation.